It’s 2017! Amid the troubled economy, we have managed to get here. The complex nature of our nation’s turbulent economy has impacted all Nigerians and leaves many feeling confused and anxious. The good news is that no matter how uncertain things may be, the basic fundamentals of personal financial management still apply, so do stay focused on this. And hey, don’t worry. Things will get better; you just need to plan. Make real plans, real financial goals, real accountability when managing your finances this year. Here are some helpful tips:
1. Create a budget: We are in challenging times, and so you have to live with times. Living as though nothing has changed during these challenging times can make a bad situation worse; changing your spending habits must be a priority. Budgeting is one of the most important tools for financial security; a good budget will help you to plan for, and monitor your expenses so you can identify where to cut back if necessary. Where does your money go? Can you cut back a little?Sometimes using a pen and paper is just fine.
2. Pay off your debt: After you have created your budget, put a number you know you can pay off your debt. If debt isn’t paid, it piles up, and puts you down. Debt has been associated with depression and suicide, so paying a certain amount each month alleviates this.
3. Don’t Invest Foolishly; Learn about money matters: You really have to seek knowledge when it comes to money matters. There is no excuse for being totally ignorant about your finances with the plethora of information around us both in print, on line, television, radio, and so on. 2016 fed Nigerians with a dose of ponzi and multi-level marketing schemes. Many people lost their lifetime savings to various schemes. This year, before you invest, seek guidance from an experienced, qualified professional, but remember that ultimately, you are responsible for your finances.
4. Invest in Yourself: Investment in self is the best. You are your greatest asset. Whether you are unemployed, in full or part-time employment, or running your own business, it is essential that you continue to develop yourself. Constantly seek additional training and knowledge through seminars, conferences in various areas of interest or more formal courses as appropriate; there is so much that you can achieve with commitment and discipline. Identify, develop and leverage on your talents and skills; those things that you are passionate about and can naturally excel at; they may well become a significant earner.
5. Share your financial goals: Your family and loved ones are there for accountability. Share your financial goals with them and how you’re hoping to get there. Children too should be introduced to the basic principles through pocket money, holiday jobs, from their earliest years.
6. Improve your Health: Health is Wealth. There is a very direct connection between your physical and your financial health. One of the leading causes of bankruptcy is attributed to medical bills and other health care costs. A heather lifestyle means fewer medical expenses and will give you brighter prospects in all aspects of your life. Do you need to lose weight, eat healthily, or exercise more regularly? Make your health a priority and take concrete steps to improve it.